© Trustees of the Royal Air Force Museum
Exhibition Preview: Nose Art, Royal Air Force Museum Cosford, Cosford, until March 31 2013As well as being a Victoria Cross winner and a World War I Ace, the Canadian Lieutenant Colonel William Barker was a dab hand at art.
One of Barker’s planes, in which he single-handedly fought more than 15 German aircraft during a critically-wounding combat, featured a lovingly-enshrined heart motif.
That symbol, painted on the wing of a Sopwith Camel previously flown by the man, appears here, having been given to his engine mechanic as a gift.
Donald Duck is also taken from a Mosquito, a Skunk comes from a Halifax and a Red Indian Brave was once the stuff of a Wellington’s façade.
“Many of the aircraft on display in the museum feature some form of artwork,” explains Assistant Curator Clare Carr, who has invited children to interpret and bring the art up to date in an accompanying display, augmented by clips from a film, Nose art and pin Ups.
“We’ve tried to place the pieces in context. It gives us the chance to bring some of the historic examples out from storage.”
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